web analytics
October 25, 2016 / 23 Tishri, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘CEO’

The New DSM-5 Definition Of Autism And Its Impact On Services

Friday, September 14th, 2012

The newest addition of the DSM-5 manual is scheduled for publication in May 2013. The DSM is used by clinicians to determine whether a client or patient meets or does not meet the criteria for a particular diagnosis.

With a new edition comes a potential new definition of autism that can be critical for many people, especially regarding funding. Psychiatrists and parents have voiced concerns that the new definition of autism in the DSM-5 will exclude many people from both a diagnosis and state services.

As with many of the disorders in the DSM-5, new diagnostic criteria and classifications are being proposed and reviewed. A new requirement for Autism Spectrum Disorder(ASD) diagnosis is that a child must exhibit symptoms from every area of the DSM diagnostic criteria.

One of the most discussed changes in the DSM-5‘s definition of ASD is the removal of Asperger’s syndrome and PDD-NOS as individual diagnoses. Under the new diagnostic criteria, Asperger’s and PDD-NOS will come under the umbrella of ASD. A child whose diagnosis is currently Asperger’s syndrome would receive a new diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder, with specifiers, such as “autism spectrum disorder with fluent speech” or “autism spectrum disorder with intellectual disability.”

Who will this affect?

Tens of thousands of people receive state-backed services to help offset the disorders’ disabling effects, which include severe learning and social problems.

Parents are justifiably concerned that any tightening of the Autistic Spectrum diagnosis will threaten their children’s eligibility for vital services. The Global and Regional Asperger Syndrome Partnership has launched a campaign to lobby the DSM-5 task force to keep a broad-spectrum concept of autism. The campaign urges those affected to contact the DSM-5 Committee to protest the newest changes.

Potential consequences

The overriding concern is what these changes mean for students receiving autism services through their Individualized Education Program. For students who currently have an IEP due to a diagnosis of Asperger’s syndrome, it seems that a change in services would be unlikely, except for the possibility of services for previously unmet needs being added.

The proposed changes are significant, and will affect not only those to whom the diagnostic labels are applied, but also the funding allocation systems and service delivery systems. In the middle of all this change are the parents who are trying to determine what this means for their children.


Debate has also been rife among medical professionals. Many divisions of the American Psychological Association have banded together to issue an open letter and petition to the DSM-5 task force and American Psychiatric Association, urging that both associations should work together on any revisions of the DSM. They also publicly oppose various aspects of the proposed changes. Their letter states, “Psychologists are not only consumers and users of the manual, but we are also producers of seminal research on DSM-defined disorder categories and their empirical correlates.”

Both the medical profession and general public have generated a frenzy of petitions and campaigns against the proposed changes to the DSM autism criteria.

The APA, meanwhile, has reassured those affected that no previously covered group will be left out in the cold. The changes would involve merging several diagnoses currently listed separately in the DSM-5 into a single umbrella category of “Autism Spectrum Disorder.”

“The proposed criteria will lead to more accurate diagnosis and will help physicians and therapists design better treatment interventions for children who suffer from ASD,” said James Scully, MD, medical director of the APA, in a release.

Neurodevelopmental Work Group member Bryan H. King, MD, believes that with the changes “we are going to be able to better characterize individuals with autism, in part because of clearer criteria that have been written to better account for people across the age span. And one could argue that this will actually make it easier for adolescents and adults, and even young children potentially, to meet criteria for diagnosis than was previously the case.”

What can I do?

Parents, caregivers and special education advocates must become knowledgeable about the proposed diagnostic revisions for Autism Spectrum Disorder and the possible effects on students receiving autism-related services. It is imperative that attention be given to the APA’s development of ASD secondary feature definitions, and the specific qualifiers that will be attached to an autism diagnosis. Becoming educated about these changes and additions is necessary so that you can be your student’s best, most effective educational and medical advocate.

Dr. Joshua Weinstein

Facebook Stock Drop: Divine Blessing for Marc Zuckerberg

Wednesday, September 5th, 2012

If a man is given a financial windfall at the end of his life, what reason does he have to change? How much enjoyment will he get out of it anyway? For an 85 year old, how great is the finest of steaks to you when your body can’t even digest it? If you just received a billion dollars, it could mean that for every good you did in this world, G-d just paid you back in full. When your time comes and the Heavenly Court measures your good deeds against the wrong you did, you will have no merit to your name. All of it was accounted for before your passing.

The Book of Deuteronomy warns of G-d rewarding a man to his end. This is what that refers to.

But what if a man is young? What if he makes a terrible mistake? What if this is a mistake he doesn’t even consider a bad choice? Does this person deserve to be taught a lesson in how to fix himself?

Hashem has just told His children, the answer is a resounding “Yes!”

Take a look at the most famous member of the People of the Book for 2012: Mark Zuckerberg.

On May 18 his company, Facebook, became a stock on the Nasdaq Exchange. Minutes after trading began the price of FB sailed to $45 a share, valuing Zuckerberg’s 603 million shares at a little more than $27 billion. He became wealthier than George Soros and Michael Bloomberg. Not bad for a twenty something from White Plains, New York.

On May 19 he did something the very same Book of Deuteronomy says a Jew can never do. He married a non-Jewish woman. Why is a Jew not allowed to marry out? Simple. G-d says so. It has nothing do with racism, superiority, exclusiveness, or anything else. One of the 613 Commandments the Creator of Heaven and Earth directs every Jew on Earth to marry another Jew.

Every instance of a Jewish man having relations with a non-Jewish woman is a sin so bad, nobody in Heaven can defend us. When our spouse dies, they go to a different part of the Next World. We don’t even have the consolation that in the afterlife we will see them — ever.

G-d could have allowed Mr. Zuckerberg to roll in his billions. He could have rewarded Mark to his end by not doing anything to help.

Instead, He sent him a tribulation of unprecedented magnitude.

From the moment Mark married a non-Jew, his finances tumbled. Facebook went from an IPO high of $45 a share to $18.03. Mark’s worth went from $27 billion, all his because he was single, to $10.9 billion – half claimable by his wife. His guaranteed assets of $5.45 bil are a whopping $21.5 billion less than what he started with.

It could get worse.

Analysts project Facebook to earn $.63 a share for 2013. The average price to earnings ratio for the Nasdaq 100 is 11.9. Multiply $.63 by 11.9 and you have a 2013 price target of $7.50, bringing Zuckerberg’s fortune down to $4.5 bil – half of which belongs to his wife.

I’ve heard of costly weddings before . . . .

This wasn’t a private lesson given to someone outside the public eye. This is the most well-known Jew on earth. His life is an open book for all of us to study. This act of love to wake up Mr. Zuckerberg also serves as an act of love for all of us. Even with “merely” $2 billion in the bank, he will not go hungry. He will not be wanting.

G-d acted to wake him up without putting him to sleep.

We spend all of our lives pursuing wealth, only to see it all go up in smoke. George Soros will die and his money will be parted from him. Mark Zuckerberg, a young man with a bright future, can easily fix his mistakes and rise to even greater heights. Wasn’t there a time in the 1990s when the once mighty Apple traded for $3 a share? Look at where it came from, how far it fell. See what it has become today.


My Beef With Chick-fil-A

Wednesday, August 29th, 2012

Many people have a problem with the Chick-fil-A chain of chicken restaurants. Universities have asked it to leave campus cafeterias and mayors have tried to ban it from their cities. The Jewish mayor of Chicago summed up his displeasure by saying “Chick-fil-A values are not Chicago values.”

Frankly, I have had my own problem with the company for years. My family and I are in the beef business. Since my great-grandfather founded a kosher beef business in Galveston, Texas in 1910, our family has prided itself on the fine red beef products it provides clients, so much so that we wonder why anyone would choose a pack of pale-yellow, skin-covered drumsticks over a delicately trimmed, gently tied, 21-day dry-aged USDA Choice corn-fed standing rib roast.

I have no problem with Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy’s recent comments about gay marriage. As a guest on “The Ken Coleman Show” he said, “I think we are inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at him and say, ‘We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage.’ ”

As a religious man, Cathy is entitled to offer his traditional Judeo-Christian perspective to listeners of the religiously sensitive radio station on which he made his comments. I am truly OK – inspired, even – with his championing the moral foundation of marriage between a man and woman that has done our American civilization good for 236 years.

But I am upset – unforgiving – about Chick-fil-A billboard advertisements that feature good-looking cows imploring impressionable consumers to eat chicken instead of beef.

I can handle criticism of our beef products. One doesn’t spend his days dealing with New York butchers and expect to receive rosy-red compliments. But clever ads that imply it is more humane to eat chicken and forgo beef cross the line and are both offensive and wrong.

Adding misinformation to misdeed, the advertising campaign uses Holstein cattle. By all accounts, Holsteins are raised to produce milk, not meat. It is a matter of economics: a milk-producing Holstein is worth much more than a fleish-toting Angus. So images of cute looking Holsteins with paintbrushes stuck between their split hooves beseeching consumers to spare the cow and roast the chicken may play well on emotions but are factually and demonstratively untrue.

According to the Torah, God allows humans to consume animals for the sake of nourishment and prosperity. He does not allow the killing of animals for sport. For more than 3,000 years Jewish law has required animals to be treated well during their lives (an owner, for example, must feed his animals before he can feed himself) and, when the time comes, to be slaughtered in a swift and near-painless manner by a man of faith and spiritual sensitivity.

Jewish law further requires us to engage in the laborious and expensive process of removing large veins from the carcass and soaking, salting and rinsing the meat in an effort to remove as much animal blood as possible. Blood is the life force of the animal.

Respecting the sanctity of life, we “despiritualize” the carcass before consuming it. While recognizing the higher role, purpose and inherent supremacy of human life, we learn that all life should be respected.

Notwithstanding my unresolved beef with Chick-fil-A, I think CEO Cathy is a remarkable man. He has made respect for religion a hallmark of his company, ensuring that all 1,614 branches are closed on Sundays, allowing employees to pray and spend time with their families on their Sabbath.

As a practicing Jew, I keep the laws of kashrus. My family has never eaten at Chick-fil-A. For that matter, we have never eaten at Denny’s or Chili’s. The only time I have ever gone to McDonalds was at Dallas Fort Worth Airport when I bought a cup of coffee before an early morning flight.

But now, for the very first time in my life, I patronized Chick-fil-A. I bought a $50 gift card. I will give it to my postal carrier in appreciation of a job well done. I chose Chick-fil-A over other retailers because when the media and left-leaning politicians are calling for the downfall of a man who speaks his heart and expresses what is good for humanity, it is time for all those who share Judeo-Christian values to stand up and be counted.

Rabbi Yaakov Rosenblatt

Yishai Interviews Russell Robinson, CEO of JNF

Friday, August 24th, 2012


Russell Robinson, the Chief Executive Officer of the Jewish National Fund, joins Yishai. Together they discuss the difference between Jews living in Israel and those living in the United States and how important it is to make Israel appealing for all Jews.  They move to talk about how JNF helps give North American Jews a voice in Israel and Robinson outlines the various projects that the JNF are involved in including projects in the Negev and also in the Galilee.  They end the segment by discussing those that perform fire watches on the JNF forests planted around Israel and how their involvement in this program is creates proud, Zionist, Jews.
Yishai Fleisher on Twitter: @YishaiFleisher
Yishai on Facebook

Moshe Herman

I Am Haredi

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

I am haredi. I was born in Brooklyn, went to mainstream haredi elementary and high schools, spent two years in Mir Yerushalayim and attended kollel at Beth Medrash Govoha in Lakewood, New Jersey. I wear a black hat on Shabbos and dark pants and a white shirt much of the week. My yarmulke is large, black and velvet, and being a frum and inspired Jew is my most basic self-definition, on par with being human and male.

Am I haredi? I believe in the utter supremacy of Torah wisdom to secular knowledge. But I also believe one can see Hashem through analysis of the physical world and that many committed Jews who engage the sciences have a richer appreciation of Hashem because of it.

Am I haredi? I believe Torah study is a most worthy pursuit and the community should support and lionize scholars whose wisdom is clear and vision is pure. Writing sefarim, debating sevaros, and forging new paths in Torah is an effort worthy of a significant portion of our charitable dollars.

Am I haredi? I learned in kollel for four years and am now in the business world. Having observed and experienced the high cost of raising a large frum family and the gargantuan, often futile effort to attain those funds without a secular education, I am no longer sure that open-ended kollel-for-the-masses is a good idea. While kollel-for-all was critical in establishing a Torah society in the late 20th century, the second decade of the 21st century may be a time to reevaluate the socio-economic ramifications of thousands of men unable to support their families with dignity.

Am I haredi? I respond with disdain when some Orthodox leaders respond to theological challenges with nuance and apologetics rather than passion and conviction. We are blessed to live in a nation whose heartland craves traditional values. We are the Judeo rock of the Judeo-Christian bedrock of American civilization and should be proud to explain our beliefs and practices to those who question them. And I respond with disgust when some of my coreligionists defend observant Jews who knowingly bend the rules and break the law, bringing dishonor to our camp and disrepute to our mission.

Am I haredi? I like to read about current events and am fascinated by the interplay of religion and politics in America. I believe we should be involved in the political process as informed, concerned citizens with traditional values, not merely as a voting bloc looking for its share of the pie.

Am I haredi? I believe in the passionate worship of Hashem and that keeping of every nuance of halacha is our path to a relationship with the Creator. I believe intense Torah study can bring one to a closer relationship with God and we are most encouraged and inspired when we seek the advice and blessing of pious rabbis. I treasure my few conversations with HaRav Nosson Zvi Finkel, zt”l, the Mir rosh yeshiva, when I studied in his yeshiva. His was a purity you could see, a connection you could touch.

Am I haredi? I cut a deep line between Judaism and the culture that surrounds it, even if some of my brethren cannot. I regard most issues of dress, attitude and religious emphasis as the result of history and personality, not values and principles.

Am I haredi? I am embarrassed when some of my brethren don’t act appropriately in the larger society. I know they are merely extending the culture that works in their neighborhoods to the larger world as they pass through it. And I understand they are intelligent, kind people who are ignorant of the mores of American society. But I am embarrassed nonetheless.

Am I haredi? I believe many non-Jews have a relationship with God that is worthy of respect and encouragement.

Am I haredi? I believe that while the haredi world has become larger over the past few decades, much of that growth has been in nuance, not diversity. I wish there were less uniformity; it would keep our most creative youth more engaged.

Am I haredi? I believe the trend in our community toward sameness of dress and greater insularity was not a decision consciously made, but the result of the blending of the yeshiva and chassidic communities in the same neighborhoods. When you daven in the same shteibels and use the same mikvehs, you take on the tendencies of the other.

Rabbi Yaakov Rosenblatt

Sheldon Adelson’s Umbrella

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

Sheldon Adelson is again under attack in the media. This time the billionaire is being criticized for his effort to target Jewish voters in swing states including Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania.

Why are the media so infatuated with an established self-made man who is doing what any active political advocate does – educating voters to see his point of view?

In today’s world, money affects politics on both the left and the right. It happens all over the world, not just in the United States, and maybe, just maybe, liberals are nervous because finally there’s someone on the right standing up to them with the force to be heard.

Like many Jews, Adelson votes on a variety of issues, not just Israel. He grew up with modest means as the son of immigrants. He dropped out of City College of New York and built a successful business. As his wealth increased, he turned to the Republican Party after realizing it was not fair to pay a higher percentage of taxes just because he worked to become a success.

I see it as he does. I am a product of the New York City public school system, have worked hard for my money and, according to government classifications, am “rich.” But I have also made many sacrifices to get where I am.

Adelson is surely reflective of changing Jewish demographics that show the Jewish community becoming more observant and traditional. He is reflective of a Jewish community that feels government is putting more strain on the hardworking entrepreneur. Government, local and national, is taxing energetic people who work every day to create opportunities for themselves and others.

Much of the mainstream media’s fascination with Adelson stems from the fact that he is a rarity – a tough Jew, a “Republican Conservative” putting his money where his mouth is, standing up and saying, “I am Jewish, proud and don’t give a damn what anyone has to say about it.”

It is refreshing and great to see. Many in the media are so accustomed to Jewish influence on the left that Adelson surprises and even frightens them.

Adelson is simply doing what his longtime friend Fred Zeidman said months ago he would: “…devote his energy and money to the overriding issue, which is beating Barack Obama.”

In a world where so many wealthy Jews follow the “Torah of Liberalism,” as Norman Podhoretz calls it, what is better than a man working for a strong America as he believes it should be? Adelson and others, like Dr. Irving Moskowitz, are working to make the world better for all who believe in an economically, physically and intellectually strong America – and using their money to help get the message out.

Every other socioeconomic group in the country moved rightward as their socioeconomic position improved – every group but the Jews. As the late Milton Himmelfarb wrote many years ago, “Jews earn like Episcopalians and vote like Puerto Ricans.” Himmelfarb meant that Jews earn like the rich establishment but vote like poor recent immigrants. This too will change.

The philosopher Max Nordau has been quoted as telling the Jewish leader Ze’ev Jabotinsky that “the Jew learns not by way of reason, but from catastrophes. He won’t buy an umbrella merely because he sees clouds in the sky. He waits until he is drenched and catches pneumonia.”

America is certainly in a catastrophic situation and it is pouring rain. Sheldon Adelson should be lauded for doing what he is doing.

Ronn Torossian is CEO of 5WPR, one of the largest U.S. PR agencies. He is an active Jewish philanthropist via the Ronn Torossian Foundation.

Ronn Torossian

Colorado Shooter Was Camp Counselor for Jewish Big Brothers and Sisters

Saturday, July 21st, 2012

James Holmes, the Colorado graduate student who is suspected of killing 12 moviegoers and wounding 58 others on Friday during the premiere of “The Dark Knight Rises,”  worked as a camp counselor in Los Angeles County in 2008 that was run by Jewish Big Brothers and Sisters (JBBBS), the group’s CEO told NBC4 on Saturday.

James Holmes, 24, worked as cabin counselor at Camp Max Straus in the summer of 2008, according to Randy Schwab, the CEO of Jewish Big Brothers Big Sisters.

Schwab’s statement read: “It is with shock and sorrow that we learned of the incident in Aurora. Our hearts and prayers go out to all the families and friends of those involved in this horrible tragedy. On behalf of Camp Max Straus I want to offer our deepest sympathies and condolences.”

Schwab said that, as cabin counselor, Holmes was in charge of the care and guidance of about 10 children. His role was to ensure that the children had a “wonderful camp experience.”

According to Schwab, Holmes helped the children in his care “learn confidence, self esteem and how to work in small teams to effect positive outcomes.”

His statement continued: “These skills are learned through activities such as archery, horseback riding, swimming, art, sports and high ropes course.”

Camp Max Straus is a nonsectarian program for children ages 7-14, which is run by Jewish Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Los Angeles.

Holmes is not Jewish.

Tibbi Singer

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/colorado-shooter-was-camp-counselor-for-jewish-big-brothers-and-sisters/2012/07/21/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: